No need for dominant party in Pakatan, says PPBM deputy president

Datuk Seri Mukhriz Mahathir speaks to reporters during the PPBM annual general assembly in Putrajaya December 30, 2018. ― Picture by Shafwan Zaidon
Datuk Seri Mukhriz Mahathir speaks to reporters during the PPBM annual general assembly in Putrajaya December 30, 2018. ― Picture by Shafwan Zaidon

PUTRAJAYA, Dec 30 ― Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) deputy president Datuk Seri Mukhriz Tun Dr Mahathir said there was no need for a Pakatan Harapan (PH) to have a dominant party among its members as the equality that existed in the coalition proved effective for all parties to express their respective opinion.

Instead, he said, the absence of a dominant party in the government was an edge that enabled PH to carry out its duties as a government.

“The practice of having consensus (in PH) is going well. I can see that there is no need to have a dominant party, like Umno in Barisan Nasional (BN) to raise matters that are regarded important,” he told Bernama in an interview at the Bersatu annual general assembly at the Putrajaya International Convention Centre (PICC) here.

He said there was a vast difference between PH and BN, where in PH, all parties had equal rights and voice, regardless of the number of seats they had in Parliament on the state assemblies.

He said BN was dominated by Umno with the party president and deputy president as prime minister and deputy prime minister, and the ministers mostly from Umno too,  but PH emphasised equality.

“In PH, we have Tun (Dr Mahathir Mohamad) from the second smallest party in PH as PH chairman and Prime Minister,” he added.

Mulhriz said Bersatu and Parti Amanah Negara (Amanah) had the least number of seats in Parliament, but had equal voice in PH, like DAP and PKR which had more seats.

“ For example, only because Bersatu has only 16 seats in Parliament, we feel ashamed to bring up issues on Malay interests at the PH Presidential Council meeting. Although there are only a few of us, we are equal in the Presidential Council and have the right to raise the matter,” he added.

He said relations among parties in PH were very strong, although there wre attempts by certain quarters to create anxiety among the people that the PH pact is fragile and not strong.

“All issues are discussed (at the Presidential Council. Anything that is felt important  will be raised and discussed in a family environment. There may be differences in opinions and views, but the spirit of brotherhood among PH component parties is strong.

“Imagine us, from BN, Umno, now sitting at the same table with DAP, PKR and Amanah. When we have known each other,  only then we know how they think. It is not the same with the perception we had before.

“Relationship of the four parties (in PH) and Warisan (Parti Warisan Sabah) is very good,” he said.

On misunderstanding among leaders in PH as viralled in the social media, Mukhriz said with the new political situation and was easy for statements by leaders to be spread on the social media.

“I don’t see it as something very serious. Before, we cannot talk about 1MDB (1Malaysia Development Bhd), the RM2.6 billion issue, but in the end the issues exploded. Issues that were hidden become big issues for the people.

“Now, we are more open, although there are differences. I don’t see it as something that can weaken the PH government. Instead, it shows that we are more transparent,” he added. ― Bernama